Two Scenarios: MBTA Debt Timeline
March 16, 2012
By Alex Ramirez, Dig Boston
On Wednesday, the final public hearing regarding the MBTA’s two proposals -- both containing unfair and unpopular fare hikes and service cuts -- was finished. Now Boston commuters will have to wait until April 4 for the board’s decision. It’s important to know that these proposals didn’t just pop up, there’s a long history behind them -- one tied up with (what else?) the Big Dig. Here’s a timeline of how we ended up in this desperate situation.
[. . . ]
2000: "Forward Funding" legislation is passed to subsidize the MBTA with 20% of statewide sales tax revenue -- which probably didn’t sound too bad at the time, considering the sales tax increased annually by an average of 6.5 percent from 1990 to 2000, and an yearly increase of at least two percent was expected.
The state also pushed $3.3 billion of debt onto the MBTA (most of it from the Big Dig) . . . T Rider’s Union formed.
[. . .]
1.23: T Riders fill two public hearings over capacity in one day in Boston’s Department of Transportation, sending a clear message with their numbers alone.
2.13: T Rider’s Union organizes a rally in Copley Square before public hearing in Boston Library. High schoolers, the elderly, and the disabled make their voices heard.